Great barbeque tips
Outdoor cooks need great barbeque tips to achieve great success.
Just say the word barbeque and it conjures up the wafting aromas of succulent goodies cooking on an outside grill. Do you do your own barbequing? It's a little difficult if you're constrained by apartment dwelling; however, those who are lucky enough to have a backyard, or at least an outside patio, do have the opportunity to partake of America's other great pastime.
If you are new to this wonderful cooking experience, here are some great barbeque tips and other helpful information that will enhance your barbequing experience — and its results! Actually, barbequing was the very first method of cooking — think of cave men gathered around a fire roasting the catch of the day. That thought probably evokes something quite different than grilled burgers and chicken!
Safety First: Propane Grill Safety Tips
• Although it would seem that any intelligent individual would have the common sense to follow this rather simple instruction, unfortunately many people do not and the results have been deadly. Read the instruction manual that came with your grill.
• Keep your grill clean and free of any grease buildup. This will enable it to work most efficiently and can prevent greasy deposits from catching fire.
• Store the propane tank upright and outdoors in the shade and away from any combustible materials. Never store a propane tank under or near your barbeque; and never store propane tanks inside your home, garage or vehicle.
• Keep children and pets away from the grill, even after you have turned everything off. Most grills remain hot long after being turned off.
Indirect Cooking — the food is cooked away from the direct flame by placing it on the opposite side of the lit burner and allowing the heat to disperse within the closed barbeque. This method is similar to a convection oven. Like your kitchen oven, you can roast, bake and smoke food. Just put moist flavored wood chips in a separate pan over the heat source and the smoky goodness will permeate the food as it cooks.
Direct Cooking — this is what we call grilling and is the most popular cooking method. Food is placed directly on the grill grate over the flame, as when searing a steak. This method is also great for thin cuts of meat, vegetables, kabobs and fillets.
A grilling wok or shaker basket makes it easy to grill vegetables to perfection without having pieces fall through the grate into the fire. The popularity of barbequing has generated an entire industry of grill accessories. Check them out online or at your local barbeque headquarters.
Rotisserie Cooking — the fastest growing barbeque cooking technique, especially if your grill is equipped with a rear rotisserie burner. Rotisserie cooking allows the food to self-baste while turning on the motorized spit, sealing in the juices while browning the outside surface. This is an excellent method for large cuts of meat such as roasts, leg of lamb or large poultry.
Other Great Barbeque Tips
• Wash everything after handling raw meat, fish or poultry to avoid the cross-contamination that can occur from contact with uncooked food. Temperatures over 140 degrees will destroy any microbes.
• Don't use the same plate for the cooked meat that you used for the uncooked meat unless you have washed it in between.
• To prevent food from sticking, coat grate with vegetable cooking spray, or brush with cooking oil. If the basting sauce contains oil, do not grease the grill as too much oil causes flare-ups.
• Cook white-meat poultry until juices run clear and the meat reaches an internal temperature of 170 to 175 degrees fahrenheit on a meat thermometer. Dark meat should reach 180 to 185 degrees fahrenheit.
• To reduce the chance of over-browning, apply tomato-based sauces or those containing sugar or other sweeteners only during the last 20 to 30 minutes of grilling.
• To make breast quarters grill more quickly and evenly, cut through the wing joint to break it and bring the wing closer to the grill.
• Chicken should be well done. If you don't want to take the usual time it takes, cook your chicken partially in the microwave and then finish it on the grill.
• Use tongs rather than a fork to turn food gently without losing juices.
Something smells awfully good already!